Supreme Court Approached to De-Seat MQM Lawmakers
ISLAMABAD: Former senator and Pakistan Muslim League –Nawaz (PML-N) leader Zafar Ali Shah has filed a petition in the Supreme Court to unseat the Muttahida Qaumi Movement’s (MQM) lawmakers who handed in their resignations last week.
Shah urged the top court to order removal of the MQM representatives from parliament and the Sindh Assembly, as well as to stop their salaries and perks in accordance with the rules laid down in the Constitution.
The move comes at a time when the government sent JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman to convince the MQM to take back the en masse resignations.
Currently, the party has 51 parliamentarians in the Sindh Assembly, 25 seats in the National Assembly and seven senators. On Aug 12, MQM’s members of the National Assembly, Senate and Sindh Assembly handed in their resignations in protest at the excesses of law enforcement agencies during the on-going Karachi operation.
National Assembly Speaker Ayaz Sadiq individually called the MQM members in his chamber and confirmed their resignations.
Shah, in his petition filed under Article 184(3) of Constitution, requested the apex court to direct the National Assembly speaker and Senate chairman to issue gazette notifications of MQM MPs resignations and communicate it to the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to hold by-elections on the vacant seats.
Drafted in Urdu, the petition asks the apex court to order the ECP to issue schedule for the by-elections according to the Article 224 of the Constitution. The said article reads: “When, except by dissolution of the National Assembly or a Provincial Assembly, a seat in any such assembly has become vacant not later than 120 days before the term of that assembly is due to expire, an election to fill the seat shall be held within 60 days from the occurrence of the vacancy.”
The senior member of the PML-N further asked the court to stop federal government, secretary National Assembly, prime minister, leader of opposition and the Sindh government to become hindrance in the way of resignations.
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